Moroccan Lamb Pizza

We used to have a ram named Genghis.

preserved lemon

golden preserved lemon, like jewels in a jar

He was a beautifully built dorper ram, with a nice wide stance, a naturally short tail and a wonderful shedding ability. His mother, Ma Costa, was by far my favourite ewe in the flock at the time. She was smart and gentle, a natural leader: a really beautiful girl. So I pegged Genghis early on as a lamb I would keep for a ram, and always paid him extra attention, feeding him treats from my hands, trying to ensure he was comfortable with me. He was always a bit more flighty than the other lambs, but I thought that with time he’d gain confidence and would grow into a wonderful specimen.


Ethical Tansley Farm meat for sale!

merguezIt is that time of year. As the pastures dry, we need to streamline the flock. This month we will be taking some older sheep for butchering, so we shall have chemical-free, antibiotic-

free, grass-fed, loved and respected meat for sale! Unfortunately due to unprecedented fox pressure last autumn, we will have no lamb for sale.

continentalI will be taking them myself to the Strathalbyn abattoir, and the butchering will be done by our most favourite butchers, the gourmet meat masters at Stirling Variety Meats. Orders will be able to be picked up at the shop in Stirling or by arrangement.

We will have braising meat, mince and gourmet sausages for sale, and we’d like to get an idea of what people want so we can have the animals prepared accordingly.

boereworsBraising meat: there is nothing like boneless shoulder from an older animal that is slow cooked in a curry. This is what a ‘ lamb’ curry is supposed to be. Similarly, you cannot make real Irish stew without neck chops. For a mere $15/kg for shoulder (bone-in chops or boneless) and $3/kg for neck chops (but note, there are not many kg of neck available in an animal).

Mince: for a REAL lamb burger, with much deeper flavour than young lamb. Or our favourite, Cypriot lachmajou, which is awesome as a pizza, topped with preserved lemon and drizzled with yogurt sauce (ask me for the recipe!): $12/kg

Gourmet sausages (three kinds):

  1. French style, coarse-ground thick links made with thyme, garlic and red wine. approx. 9 links/kg, $10/kg
  2. North African Merguez: coarse-ground, thick links made with a beautiful spice mix including cumin, cinnamon, coriander, paprika and cayenne. Oh so yum! approx. 9 links/kg, $10/kg
  3. Boerewors-style: a coarse-ground sausage spiced with coriander, cloves, nutmeg and red wine, one continuous sausage in a dramatic coil, so awesome on the barbecue. Yes, we know it should be beef and pork, but why? Lamb is so much better. One big gorgeous coil at around 700-800 g, $10/kg.

Let us know if there is something special you would like and we will do our best to accommodate you.

We only offer meat from our flock twice a year, so if you are keen, be sure to get your order in! Stay tuned for chickens in the autumn.

Of course, if you have any questions about the individual animals or our farming practices, feel free to ask.

For orders, please email

L’Orpheline cider on sale now

2014 L'Orpheline Brut ciderIt’s finally ready – our long-awaited 2014 L’Orpheline Brut cider goes on sale today.

We’re particularly pleased with how this Normandy-style cider turned out in the end. It is has a light, crisp and completely dry lilt off the tongue, with the full apple flavour preserved. We added something special as well this year – a soupçon (hint) of quince, which gives a delicate floral nose and tart finish.

We crushed and pressed the spray-free fruit during the same day, and then fermented the juice in old French oak barrels using entirely wild yeast. We added nothing during the process. We picked the fruit a tad early to preserve that crispness typical of the Normandy-style ciders, and so the alcohol content is at a respectable 5%.

We find that L’Orpheline goes particularly well with foods that traditionally do not tend to match wines that well, such as spicy Asian or Mexican dishes. That said, it is a really food-friendly beverage, from cheese (the Farmer-in-Chief’s Outlaw brie, bien sûr) to chops straight off the barbecue. Of course, L’Orpheline chilled to about 5 degrees is the perfect summer drink by itself.

You probably won’t be seeing L’Orpheline in the local shops because we only have about 35 cases to sell, so orders can be made by contacting us directly at If you’re within the vicinity of Adelaide, we can arrange personal delivery.

Prices are AU$20/750 ml bottle.  Get in quick before we drink it all! (were there really 3 empties after dinner last night?) Santé!


How to make chickens

Look what I made!

Look what I made!

As I started the incubator last week for the first hatch of the season, I thought I would write a bit about what I have learned over the years about hatching and raising chicks. Last summer, I had a major flock-growing season, so I am pretty good for layers at the moment- I may hatch 10 or so for myself to replace some of the old girls, but this first batch is for our good friends at Ngeringa winery, who want to add more chickens to their vineyard pest control flock.

Making chickens is by far my favourite farm activity. I love little peeping chicks; I love broody, clucky mother hens. I love the signals she gives them as she teaches them to be chickens- observing this relationship resonates with my primal soul. As a human being, I think that you cannot help but be moved by the clear display of attentive motherhood in another species. Unless there is something wrong with you, of course.


What’s in a Name?

When we first moved to the farm, sheep were surprisingly hard to come by.

Prices were at record highs and no one had any to spare. Of course, I had my heart set on dorpers, with their crisp back heads and necks, their shedding ability and their stocky bodies, good for the butcher. Unfortunately, at the time they were quite trendy and with that and the general sheep shortage they were almost impossible to buy.

Spring came; a very wet spring after a very wet winter and the grass sprang to life, grass everywhere, up to my knees.

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